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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the Scottish Marr family come from? What is the Scottish Marr family crest and coat of arms? When did the Marr family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Marr family history?

The chronicles of the Marr family reach back into Scottish history to an ancient tribe known as the Picts. The ancestors of the Marr family lived in a place called Mar, which was in the county of Aberdeen. It may come from the Old Norse word marr, which was an extremely rare word, that was usually associated with the sea, but sometimes referred to a marsh or a fen. In this sense, Marr would be a habitational name.

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When the first dictionaries were invented in the last few hundred years, spelling gradually became standardized. Before that time, scribes spelled according to sound. Names were often recorded under different spelling variations every time they were written. Marr has been written Marr, Mar, Marre, Mare and others.

First found in Yorkshire, where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Marr research. Another 394 words(28 lines of text) covering the years 1120, 1296, and 1353 are included under the topic Early Marr History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Marr Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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The crossing to North America did not seem so great in comparison with the hardships many Scots endured at home. It was long, expensive, and cramped, but also rewarding. North America offered land and the chance for settlers to prove themselves in a new place. And many did prove themselves as they fought to forge a new nation in the American War of Independence. The ancestors of those Scots can now experience much of their once-lost heritage through the Clan societies and highland games that have sprung up across North America in the last century. A search of immigration and passenger lists revealed many important, early immigrants to North America bearing the name of Marr:

Marr Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Christopher Marr settled in Virginia in 1715
  • Alexander Marr who settled in Maryland in 1747
  • James Marr settled in Virginia in 1774

Marr Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • George, Jacob, John, Peter and Thomas Marr arrived in Pennsylvania between 1800 and 1870

Marr Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • William Marr arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Timaru" in 1870

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  • David Francis Marr Jr. (1933-1997), American professional PGA golfer and sportscaster
  • Barbara La Marr (1896-1926), born Reatha Dale Watson, an American stage and film actress, known as "The Girl Who Is Too Beautiful"
  • Walter Lorenzo Marr (1865-1941), American automaker, founder of the Marr Auto-Car Company in 1903, and later the first Chief Engineer for Buick in 1904
  • Mr. Desmond Marr, British Boy, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking
  • Alfred Marr (1862-1940), Australian cricketer
  • David Ewan Marr (b. 1947), Australian journalist, author, and progressive political and social commentator
  • David Courtnay Marr (1945-1980), British neuroscientist and psychologist, eponym of the Marr Prize
  • Sir Charles William Clanan Marr KCVO (1880-1960), Australian politician
  • Johnny Marr (b. 1963), English songwriter, guitarist, keyboardist, harmonica player, and singer
  • Leslie Marr (b. 1922), British former racing driver

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  1. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  2. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Moody David. Scottish Family History. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1994. Print. (ISBN 0806312688).
  4. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  5. Fulton, Alexander. Scotland and Her Tartans: The Romantic Heritage of the Scottish Clans and Families. Godalming: Bramley, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-86283-880-0).
  6. Barrow, G.W.S Ed. The Charters of David I The Written Acts of David I King of Scots, 1124-53 and of His Son Henry, Earl of Northumerland, 1139-52. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 1999. Print.
  7. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  10. Innes, Thomas and Learney. Scots Heraldry A Practical Handbook on the Historical Principles and Mordern Application of the Art and Science. London: Oliver and Boyd, 1934. Print.
  11. ...

The Marr Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Marr Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 25 July 2015 at 12:27.

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